Devotional: August 29th
Rain. We finally are having some of the wet stuff falling from the skies here in the Bluegrass. After weeks of dry weather and parched lawns that actually crunch when you walk on them, we are getting rain. Kind of odd, though. What we are so thankful for here is the end of what caused tremendous damage down in the Gulf of Mexico. Our rain is the result of Hurricane Dennis which swept ashore this past weekend leaving in its wake a swath of destruction. And we get much needed rain.
It has been good the last few days to actually see wet roads. Oh, there have been the usual fender benders from the people who still haven't realized that rain does actually increase the amount of road surface you need to stop before crashing into another vehicle or that rain makes curves a little slicker and more difficult to take at speeds over the speed limit. To a certain extent, I guess the outcome is justified from the action. Still, while those who have had road problems curse the wet roads the majority of us are thankful to see them and their cause.
The last few days have been, not just filled with rain, but also a bit cooler, as the rain has had a cooling effect on the area. But the greatest benefit is what the rain is doing for the ground. We are more than seven inches short of normal rainfall for this time of the year which has left the area with water restrictions in many places and yards that look like miniature wheat fields ready for harvest. The people with whom I have spoken recently are grateful to see the rain. Many even call it a blessing from God and answered prayer.
Once Israel, due to her deep corruption through Ahab and his wife, Jezebel, angered God to the point where His prophet, Elijah, prayed and the rain ceased for three and a half years (James 5:17). The severe drought and a confrontation with king Ahab led Elijah to a great show down with all the prophets of Jezebel on Mount Carmel. The Lord delivered a great victory that day and Elijah led the people in an execution of the prophets of Baal. Elijah faced King Ahab.
"Then Elijah said to Ahab, 'Go up, eat and drink; for there is the sound of abundance of rain.' " 1 Kings 18:41 The long drought was about to end at the Lord's word. The point of Elijah's prayer at the beginning of the drought and the point of the battle of Mount Carmel was to illustrate spiritual drought and that such droughts only end when what caused them is gone. With the spiritual drought coming to and end as the people once again established the Lord as God, the illustration of the physical drought could now end as well. The sound of abundance of rain surely carried the sound of blessing to the ears of the Israelites.
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